I’d like to believe that we’ve been able to conduct a courteous informative discussion about current events with folks who hold ideas and beliefs that are diametrically different from our own. However, this has unfortunately proven itself not to be the case. In regards to opposing influences, many people believe that the news media is nothing more than an inter-connected advertising operation planned by its media’s owners. Hence, leading its viewers to question if they are being misinformed or deceived.
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In other words, the news does not always report what is happening; rather, it focuses on what people are thinking and feeling about what is happening. With this influence in mind, having a civil conversation about contentious issues has become increasingly difficult. We may be able to have a respectful conversation digitally when we are separated from each other, but this can also embolden some to abusively bully others due to the lack of personal proximity. I would argue that having a conversation about contentious issues in public or on social media has become increasingly difficult than ever before. However, it appears that having a civil discussion in private is much easier, but it can also present its own set of challenges. However, when we are close enough to each other, we may feel freer to talk about what we are passionate about without fear of retaliation from others.
As a result, the media can be a powerful tool for social change, but it also can be an instrument of oppression. The media does not necessarily try to control the information flow; it just tries to control what we are allowed to focus our attention on. This is most likely the reason for the level of discontent among viewers and readers. It is time to get beyond the information and focus on the discourse.
How then can we have a respectful debate? As a society, we have to be a nation of believers in the importance of the freedom of expression that involves having open civil discourse. When we can’t have a respectful debate, we have no chance of solving our most contentious issues, which can include theological matters, from economics, unemployment rates, homelessness, election fraud, scientific data & research which are among many other crucial issues worth discussing. We can have a respectful debate by knowing that everyone has the right to their own opinion despite their differences. This is a privilege that is granted to people by God. By having this right we can have a more educated and informed society. We can all agree to disagree without fear that we will be harmed just because we have a different opinion. We can all understand that we as a society have a responsibility not to silence dissent voices, but to engage in a more honest and respectful discussion that allows us to solve our problems together and address the most critical affairs of our time. We can all live in harmony without fearing one another or our beliefs but have confidence in the principles that are at the core of our beliefs and agree to disagree respectfully without resorting to name-calling or personal insults.
However, sadly there are those who do not want a free society that can exchange opposing ideas over those determined to be officially acceptable. They want total control. They want to silence any dissenting voice. They want to be the only voice we hear. They want the ability to control our access to information and ideas, and they want the ability to manipulate our minds. They want us to be afraid of them. They want us to be afraid of one another. They want us to be afraid of our own opinions. They want to control our words and our actions. They want us to be afraid of the power they have. They want us to think that they know what is best for us. They want us to believe that there is no hope for us. They want us to believe that our opinions or even expert observations are not important and that we are just an annoying nuisance to society. Again, they want to control us. We the people can not let their reign of tyranny overcome our thirst for freedom.
In reflection, the original goal of the United States was not we the people co-dependent on governmental parenting it was to protect the liberty of everyone who resides within its borders. This is why we have a Constitution that is the law of the land. This is why we have freedom of speech and freedom of religion. This is why we have a Bill of Rights. This is why historically we’ve lawfully protected the free press and people who are not afraid of challenging the powers that be by telling the truth. We the people can not let the people who are afraid of their own thoughts destroy our nation. We as Americans must stand up and speak out against the tyranny that is growing. We must do this now. We have the power to make changes, but it all starts with each and every one of us.
In the end, it is all about discourse and open, respectful debate. As our nation is polarized on so many issues, the ability to have a civil conversation about contentious issues is one of the most important things that all of us can do to help our country heal. Reform in the media and social media digital square spaces is the first step, but it is not the last step. In other words, when the dialogue ends, it is crucial to get involved in alternative ways, such as by voting or writing to your legislators, to help effect change for the future of our country and our world.
The world is in its valley of decision. People are still hurting and suffering all over the world. We still have a great need for hope, equal justice, and peace. Yet, we still have hope that humanity can overcome the forces that keep us in poverty, in war, in greed and, destructive ignorance. That is why having an open conversation about current events or other meaningful topics may be vitally important in ensuring that the world we live in is one of cooperation and peace rather than one that promotes fear and hostility. It is not just about fighting the news, it is about fighting the fear and loathing that can destroy us and this world. It is about embracing instead of rejecting that which makes us different. It is about having an open dialog about all of the issues that make up this world. That’s why the preservation of our God-given right to free speech is so important. It’s about having the freedom to express ourselves without fear of being punished for doing so. It is about having a free society. It is about having a free world.
Through the free exchange of ideas, we can all hopefully contribute to a solution that will result in a world that is fair, for justice, and for peace. This endeavor is an ongoing living hope for each of us. We are each a member of the human family and have the same bodily worth as everyone else. The gift of love, as well as our ability to freely communicate our thoughts or ideas and express compassion, are the most valuable gifts we can give to each other and our world. This world is too important to let our differences dictate how we live here. I am a big believer in the beneficial power of discourse and debate and hope that you are, too. It all comes down to how we use this gift that our creator has bestowed upon us. Hopefully, we will all put our talents to good use and work together to make the world a better place for all of us. Thank you, and have a good day or evening. Let’s do this!.
Stay Tuned for a corresponding video presentation of this post. Todah!